Every community needs three major things to be successful, according to retired dentist Ken Gibson: healthcare, education and recreation. Of these, quality medical care tops them all. Gibson believes so strongly in supporting the region’s healthcare that he serves as a steering committee member of Pullman Regional Hospital’s Endowment for Quality and Access—and donated to the fund as well.
“It’s extremely important that the community has excellent healthcare,” he said. “In today’s world, the technology needed for quality medical care is so expensive. The hospital needs an endowment to provide sustained funding, and the Endowment for Quality and Access will do that.”
The goal is to raise $10 million for the endowment, Gibson said. In addition to keeping pace with advancements in medical technology, the fund will help bolster dwindling reimbursements Pullman Regional receives as medical costs continue to rise.
“The response from the community so far has been very encouraging,” he said. Support has even come from outside the region; two former Pullman residents made generous gifts to the endowment.
Gibson’s own ties to Pullman started 45 years ago when he and his late wife, Judy, moved to the city and set up his dentistry practice. They raised two daughters, Nancy and Laura, both Pullman High School and Washington State University graduates. The next generation will also call Pullman home soon: granddaughter Laynie plans to attend WSU this fall.
Leadership roles are not new to Gibson. He was president of the Lions Club, where he is still a current member, and the hospital foundation board. He has also served on the United Way and Pullman Chamber of Commerce boards and is active in Cougar Club.
Another reason Gibson serves on the endowment’s steering committee is his own personal experience of being cared for at Pullman Regional Hospital. He has been in remission with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma for eight years.
“I think the care was excellent,” he said.